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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I want to build a drag car like the ones that ran in the 60s. I have been reading the SEGA rules though, and it sounds like this scene is run by some pompous ah's. You can hear the tone just reading the words, even if you didn't know how ridiculous the rules actually are. What is this rule about having to do a wheel stand of a certain height. Do they measure it on every run? Straight axles only? Minimum heights for the front and rear higher than any car I saw at the 67 nationals. They say they want to keep it authentic to 1967 a, b, c, H, SS, and AFX, but I don't think anyone that showed up with an original car would qualify for these rules. Did any A/FX cars have straight axles? Did even half the a/ gas cars? Now they even want their SS card jacked up and doing wheelies. I recently watched the 66 and 67 nationals, and I didn't see anything like what they call authentic. What they run seems more like some kind of rat rod, street freak hybrids.
 

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I want to build a drag car like the ones that ran in the 60s. I have been reading the SEGA rules though, and it sounds like this scene is run by some pompous ah's. You can hear the tone just reading the words, even if you didn't know how ridiculous the rules actually are. What is this rule about having to do a wheel stand of a certain height. Do they measure it on every run? Straight axles only? Minimum heights for the front and rear higher than any car I saw at the 67 nationals. They say they want to keep it authentic to 1967 a, b, c, H, SS, and AFX, but I don't think anyone that showed up with an original car would qualify for these rules. Did any A/FX cars have straight axles? Did even half the a/ gas cars? Now they even want their SS card jacked up and doing wheelies. I recently watched the 66 and 67 nationals, and I didn't see anything like what they call authentic. What they run seems more like some kind of rat rod, street freak hybrids.
SEGA rules are made to create cars that entertain, and any comparison to the rules they infer to emulate are pretty loose. That said, they have created a genre that is fun to watch, and people certainly enjoy the cars running under SEGA rules.
Right out of the gate, any "gasser" running SEGA is required to be a 4 speed car, which a huge number of gassers in the mid 60's didn't run. And although they had a 24" crank centerline rule, there was no minimum height rule back then under NHRA. Also not much of a wheel or tire rule in the real gassers, so guys ran the latest and best tires and wheels available, or whatever they could afford. And straight axles were extremely popular, but probably more gassers without them, especially in the lower classes. And finally the NHRA rules required participants to use a factory frame at that period of time. It didn't matter what car the frame came out of, and it could be somewhat modified. But it had to be a factory frame, not custom built of boxed tubing, or round tube. SEGA allows boxed tube frames.
But it is there game, and people have a right to either accept their rules, and play, or not. But their rules have often muddied the waters, as I often see references by folks saying SEGA rules are "authentic" or "true to the era"; when they certainly aren't.

A/FX cars did indeed use dropped tube or straight tube axles. Early on they sat higher, but not for long. Later cars had better slicks, so like Gassers, the A/FX and B/FX cars also lowered the fronts. But they still used a good number built with tube front axles.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah, they can make their rules however they want and I don't really have a problem with the 4 speed part, as any heads up class back then, I doubt an automatic of the era had a chance of winning anyways, and probably with today's automatic cars, that's all you would see winning today. The 24" crankshaft heght was a maximum height for safety I thought. I don't think there were many close to it by 64 or 65 even, with the big slick tires that were available. Do you know where I can get a look at any of the old original a/fx car pictures, or where any of them are today? Where there many indepent teams, or was it usually mopar, pontiac, ford backed stuff?
 

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Yeah, they can make their rules however they want and I don't really have a problem with the 4 speed part, as any heads up class back then, I doubt an automatic of the era had a chance of winning anyways, and probably with today's automatic cars, that's all you would see winning today. The 24" crankshaft heght was a maximum height for safety I thought. I don't think there were many close to it by 64 or 65 even, with the big slick tires that were available. Do you know where I can get a look at any of the old original a/fx car pictures, or where any of them are today? Where there many indepent teams, or was it usually mopar, pontiac, ford backed stuff?
I would guess the crankshaft rule could certainly have something to do with safety, as many NHRA rules have safety in mind. As for automatics being able to compete with 4 speed cars, they were extremely competitive, and a huge number of the top Gas Class cars ran various brands based on reworked old GM Hydromatics. That was the era of huge developments in automatic transmissions for drag racing, and companies like B&M, Hydromotive, and Cal-Hydro were all building some sort of Hydromatic to be very competitive back then. In fact most of what's referred to as the "Gasser Wars" was sparked by these tranny builders running ads touting their superior trans, or challenging those who ran other brands to meet the cars they supported in match races. The big cam makers like Iskenderian, and Howard's Cams also were instrumental in fueling the Gasser Wars with similar ads.
Stone Woods and Cook, Big John Mazmanian, KS Pittman, and a bunch of other big names all ran automatics and won often with them.
Bob McClurg did a book called, "Diggers, Funnies, Gassers, and Altereds" that is still fairly easy to find. It's got great pictures of the early Funny Cars which often were reworked A/FX cars they altered the wheelbase on until they ended up being Funny Cars. His book does a great job of telling and showing how FX cars transitioned into Funny Cars, with great stories, and pictures. Well worth buying if you're into old school drag racing history.
I'd snatch this copy up if you want one, as it's $28, and that's less than half what they're going for lately!


Larry Davis' "Gasser Wars" book has always been THE BOOK for old gasser info. But unfortunately it's gotten so collectible they've made it tough to buy. I bought my copy back before they went nuts for $22, but now even the soft bound versions go for a hundred dollars, unless you get lucky and find one cheaper.
 
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